Towns with Congestion Charges
Same scheme as in Trondheim
The London scheme requires drivers to pay £8 per day if they wish to continue driving in central London during the scheme's hours of operation.
The following explains why the Mayor has decided to introduce congestion charging in central London.
- London suffers the worst traffic congestion in the UK and amongst the worst in Europe.
- Drivers in central London spend 50% of their time in queues.
- Every weekday morning, the equivalent of 25 busy motorway lanes of traffic tries to enter central London.
- It has been estimated that London loses between £2–4 million every week in terms of lost time caused by congestion.
The Mayor hopes the charge will cut congestion by up to 15% and raise at
least £130 million a year which, by law, will have to go back into the
capital's transport system.
In September 2005, the western expansion of the congestion charge was confirmed, and it will come into effect in February 2007.
More Information: www.cclondon.com
- Population 3.2 million; city covers 7,800 sq km.
- 'CityLink' Toll road 22 kilometres long, linking three of Melbourne's arterial freeways, opened in 1999.
- Average weekday number of transactions 650,000, reaping $AUD187 million in revenue.
- Pre-paid e-tags mounted on windscreen, read by overhead gantries; toll statements mailed quarterly; accounts have to be topped up when balance falls below a certain level.
- Purely automatic vehicle identification technology (similar to London) - no alternative of direct-payment toll booths.
- Motorists not equipped with e-tags who do not pay by following midday have registration number recorded and sent to Traffic Camera Office along with digital image of the vehicle.
- Offenders fined a flat fee of $100.
- Congestion significantly reduced in north and west Melbourne.
- Less pollution and safer conditions on local streets.
- 99.9% of vehicles captured electronically; 90% overall.
Same scheme as in Trondheim.
Since January 2007, drivers who want to enter Rome's "Zone of Limited Traffic" (Zona a Traffico Limitato, ZTL) have to buy a licence (550 euro per year). Similarly, Mailand will start with a city toll charge in October 2007.
More information: www.atac.roma.it
Source: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 07/30/2007, Nr. 174, p. 7
- Population 3,665,920; city covers 647.5 sq km.
- Total vehicles in city number approximately 707,000.
- Charging area much smaller than London and divided into central business districts, where scheme applies from 7.30am to 7.00pm, and expressways/outer ring roads, where scheme applies from 7.30am to 9.30am.
- Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) system introduced in 1998, though a manual road pricing system (with officers making visual checks at each entry point) introduced in 1975. (The first city using a congestion charge)
- CashCard can be bought/topped up at retail outlets, banks, petrol stations and automatic machines, fixed to vehicle windscreen.
- Different charges for different roads at different times automatically deducted from CashCard as vehicle passes under gantries.
- Immediate reduction of 24,700 cars during peak and rise of traffic speed by 22%.
- Total reduction of traffic in zone during charging period by 13% from 270,000 to 235,100.
- Reduced number of solo drivers.
- Vehicle trips shifted from peak to non-peak.
- ERP system cut down on previously paper-heavy system.
(18.9.2006) Stockholm voters (but not the commuters of the hinterland)
approved a new road toll system designed to reduce traffic, noise and
pollution, officials said Monday. Near-complete results
for the Sunday referendum showed that 51.7% of Stockholm voters approved the
traffic toll, while 45.6% voted against it. The referendum in the Swedish
capital took place in conjunction with national elections for parliament
that saw a center-right alliance voted in and ousted Social Democrats after
12 years in power.
The congestion fee was contested when city officials introduced it in a seven-month trial that ran between January and July. But public opinion swung in favor of the charges after studies showed that weekday traffic on average dropped 20 percent during the trial, while pollution decreased 9-14 percent. Drivers had to pay a fee when entering and leaving the city during rush-hour.
The toll system has reduced the traffic volumes by 20 to 25 percent especially in the afternoon, while the utilization of public transport has been risen by 8 percent. Congestion at the entrance to the town has been trimmed, but the traffic in the hinterland increased disproportionately (traffic diversion). A reduction of flue gas and noise as well as other effects were not significant. After all inner city trade was not influenced by restricting the traffic as was feared before.
Source: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 07/30/2007, Nr. 174, p. 7
Sydney / Melbourne / Brisbane
The Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA) in New South Wales (Australia)
manages a network of toll roads especially in Sydney, Melbourne, and
Brisbane (including the famous Sydney Harbour Bridge). The example of the
Cross City Tunnel – connecting Darling Harbour and Kings Cross in
Sydney since August 2005 – shows that not all toll roads are always
profitable. The tunnel is used by merely 30000 (rather than estimated
90000) vehicles per day. Even when the passage was for free during a
promotion no more than 50000 drivers decided to use the new opportunity.
Sixteen months after opening Sydney's Cross City Tunnel is in bankruptcy.
Source: Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA), New South Wales www.rta.nsw.gov.au, RTA Annual Reports and Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 07/30/2007, Nr. 174, p. 7
- Population 4.3 million; city covers 100 sq km.
- '407 ETR' toll road 79 km long just north of Toronto; further extensions scheduled to open in mid-2001; when complete, scheme will be 108 km in total.
- Over 263,000 average weekday trips.
- All-electronic, open access toll highway; vehicles charged per kilometre; no minimum charge; billing retrospective on a monthly basis.
- Users can choose to have transponder mounted on windscreen, read by overhead gantries; or pay $2 non-transponder charge per trip to have number plates read by licence plate recognition system also located on gantries (70% of tolls collected by electronic transponder and 30% by licence plate system).
- Congestion relieved throughout overloaded highway system in area.
- Speeds double those of similar, free highways.
- Population 140,000.
- Charging area approximately 4km by 6km.
- Fully automatic 'toll ring' was introduced in 1991 and subsequently divided into sectors.
- Charging period 6am - 6pm, Monday to Friday.
- Unmanned electronic toll booths deduct fee from windscreen-mounted unit each time vehicle enters toll zone or passes a toll point within the zone, rather than on daily basis.
- Limits imposed on number of charges that can be made so that people who live close by the ring or who make very frequent crossings do not have huge bills.
- Occasional users can pay by automatic coin machine or by 'swipecard' at barriered lanes.
- Toll prices go up during peak rush hours and drivers are also charged a toll for passing from one sector of the toll ring to another.
- Heavy Goods Vehicles pay a double toll.
- Peak rush hour traffic immediately dipped by 10%.
- Revenues from the tolls have paid to improve roads and build bypasses to cut traffic congestion.
- Income is also used to give commuters other options by upgrading public transit, building bicycle paths and even providing 200 free bicycles for use downtown.
- Public opinion initially 72% opposed, dropping to 48% two months after launch and reducing to 36% by 1996.